Major League Baseball (MLB) has awarded its 2021 All-Star Game to the Atlanta Braves, while the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals will reportedly be the teams involved in the second edition of the London Series next year.
SunTrust Park, the Braves’ home since 2017, will host the All-Star Game for the first time, with the event having previously been held in Atlanta in 1972 and 2000, respectively. The Braves will follow the two upcoming Midsummer Classic hosts. The Cleveland Indians will welcome the 90th All-Star Game to Progressive Field on July 9, and the Los Angeles Dodgers will host the 2020 Midsummer Classic at Dodger Stadium, the first at the historic ballpark since 1980.
The Braves had previously bid for the 2020 game and MLB’s announcement comes after it last month confirmed that the 2026 All-Star Game will be held in Philadelphia to mark the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.
Braves chairman Terry McGuirk said: “When we built SunTrust Park and The Battery Atlanta we envisioned our complex would be the perfect setting for an All-Star Game and we are thrilled to be able to showcase the ballpark, Cobb County and the City of Atlanta to the world.”
SunTrust Park and its adjoining mixed-use development, The Battery Atlanta, has been praised by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred who has said the facilities serve as a blueprint for other teams in terms of in-stadium experience and dining and entertainment options outside of the ballpark.
Manfred said, according to the club’s official website: “The Braves’ bid was successful for really three reasons. There was great commitment of all of the involved governmental entities. Secondly, there’s no place in Major League Baseball where there’s more buzz around a great young team than there is here in Atlanta. Last, and maybe most important for us, the facility here, including SunTrust Park and the Battery Atlanta, is the best in baseball. Hats off to chairman Terry McGuirk for the development here.”
In other news, the Associated Press news agency, citing a draft of the 2020 MLB preliminary schedule, said the Cubs and Cardinals will play at London Stadium in a two-game series on June 13-14. The Cardinals will be the designated ‘home’ team for both games.
The New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox will meet in MLB’s first games in Europe on June 29-30. The League had agreed an initial two-year deal to stage the London Series in May 2018.